Great Catch!

by Tamar Caspi under Relationships

Dear Tamar,

I feel that I receive limited responses to my JDate profile and was wondering ways to attract women? I am tall with diverse interests but divorced (no children) and in my mid-40′s. Any suggestions?

Dear Great Catch!,

You are, in fact, a great catch based solely off of the information you just gave me. I know of dozens of women who would be interested in you! So that means you’re probably not representing your best self in your profile since you’re not receiving replies. Try taking new photos – this New Year’s is a great time to get some candid photos of you having fun and celebrating! Make sure your preferences are realistic. I know women in their early to mid-thirties who would be interested in you, but you will, without a doubt, have more luck with women in their late thirties to mid-forties, so your age range needs to be pretty broad. Finally, although I’ve now told you that you seem like you’re a great catch, make sure your About Me paragraph doesn’t come across as cocky. Nothing is worse than a guy who is a great catch and says so himself! Oh, and instead of just saying “diverse interests,” actually name some of them that are indeed diverse. Having broad preferences is good, making broad statements is not.

Message Center Mystery

by Tamar Caspi under Relationships

Dear Tamar,

I’ve sent various messages to different guys trying to open my mind and my preferences. However, most of them do not even open my message whether it’s a flirt or an email. What should I do?

Dear Message Center Mystery,

Don’t give up. It can take dozens and dozens of flirts and emails before you receive the kind of response you want, or any response at all. I’m glad that you’re expanding your preferences, so now make sure your profile and messages properly reflect you. Double check your photos, especially the first one, to make sure it’s the best photo you’ve ever taken! Confirm that your “About Me” paragraph is cute and flirty and fun. In particular, make sure the first sentence is catchy. Remember that many people are not paid members of JDate which means they cannot check their email, so don’t consider every unopened email a rejection. Have a good friend – one whom will be brutally honest – critique your photos, profile and emails, as well as your preferences, to make sure that you truly are putting yourself out there.

JDate No Date

by Tamar Caspi under Relationships

Dear Tamar,

No one on JDate will talk to me! Help! No one responds to my emails – I’ve tried keeping it short and I’ve tried elaborating, I’m not getting anymore “clicks” and no one wants to chat. WTF?! How do I fix this problem?! Lol. Please help!

Dear JDate No Date,

I can tell you’re really frustrated and I hope I can help. First, you’ve gotta shake off this recent dating downturn. Everyone goes through it at some point and it’s how you handle it that will make all the difference. Next, if you’re not a paid member I suggest you become one in order to maximize your chances. Change your preferences so that you’re searching for the categories that you would fall into and check out your competitions’ pictures and profiles to see what you are up against. Using what you’ve learned apply it to renovating your own profile and photos. While you’re at it, ask a trusted friend or relative to critique your profile honestly and bluntly and don’t take it personally. Even ask that confidant to critique your emails and IMs to potential dates to make sure you’re coming off the right way. And two final thoughts: One, make sure that your preferences are not too restricted and two, don’t give up, all dating lulls eventually come to an end so just have patience and keep at it and your luck will turn. Good Luck!

Help Please!!!

by Tamar Caspi under Online Dating,Relationships

Hey Tamar,

Can you please help me find someone beautiful that wants a serious relationship? Thank you……..!!!!!!!!

Dear Help Please!,

Looks like you’re helping yourself pretty well by #1 being on JDate and #2 writing me!  If you’re really serious about finding your Beshert, follow my previous tips regarding creating your profile and setting your preferences. Remember, set flexible standards and don’t limit yourself in area, age range, education, etc. It will help if you make your own Top 10 list and spend some quality time ranking the characteristics that are most important to you. The top 3-5 should be items that you’re not willing to negotiate about. Although attraction is important, it can be based on many things so make sure “looks” are not on that list! Only eliminate prospects based on those traits because chances are you will find yourself attracted to people who have your desired features. The next thing to make sure you have in your favor when trying to find your Beshert is your attitude. Be upbeat, positive, interesting and conversational. Ask questions and listen to the answers, let your date get to know you as well and don’t forget to smile! Finally, if you’re interested in meeting a JDate or seeing a date again, don’t hesitate to make it obvious or to make the plans yourself! Good luck!

Losing Faith

by Tamar Caspi under Relationships

Dear Tamar,

I’m a caring, honest gentleman who has lost faith and trust. I haven’t received any responses from members on JDate and I’ve been on for a year.  I’m looking for a nice, genuine, caring, cute girl, but after reading through profiles, it’s hard to tell whether or not they’re real. How can you tell?

Dear Losing Faith,

I know it’s hard not to get cynical when dating has become difficult, but try to keep faith that there are some really great ladies out there who are perfect for you and who want to date and marry you. My advice would be not to worry about if profiles are fake or not but, rather, to concentrate more on what you’re putting out there and who you’re pursuing. Are your pictures and profile up to par? Are your preferences realistic? Make sure you’re representing yourself honestly, just as you want women to be honest, as well. Also, be careful of not being too forward in your introductory emails; simply let the women know what about them you found intriguing, what commonalities you have and that you’d like to get to know her better. Ask the most down to earth woman you know to check out your pictures, profile, preferences and emails to make sure you’re coming across the way you’re hoping to. Once you have that taken care of, I’m sure you will start getting some responses. Good Luck!

Age Range Rover

by Tamar Caspi under Relationships

A few years ago I dated a guy about five years older than me. When the relationship ended, I was stunned to see him step out with a woman five years older than he. That’s when I realized I was competing with women ten years my junior for the same men. Not a comforting thought.

This realization opened my eyes to a number of things. First, the guys on JDate are selecting a much wider age range than I had assumed. Men are far more open to dating women both much younger as well as much older than they are. Second, women tend to have much stricter standards and that calculates to more women per capita, an equation that makes an already tough dating scene seem impossible. It also made me realize that I don’t want to still be single ten years from now dating guys that are also dating girls ten years younger than I. If it bothers me as the younger woman in the scenario, I can’t even begin to imagine how perturbed the older women are.

I decided that women need to take a page from the men’s handbook and increase their age range preference. Of course you need to feel comfortable, but there’s no reason not to date a guy a year or two younger or, even, up to ten years older. If you feel old enough to be a guy’s mother or young enough to be his daughter, then maybe you’ve gone too far. Simply increase your age range a little bit in each direction in order to increase your chances at meeting your beshert. Good Luck!

High Standards Syndrome

by Tamar Caspi under JDate,Relationships

Dear Tamar,

I know this may seem like a hard question to answer, but when Jewish girls are looking to date a Jewish guy, why do they have really high standards that no one can meet?  Every girl I’ve come in contact with on JDate is looking for someone that doesn’t exist.  For instance, I’ve met some girls who are still in school but are looking for a guy who already has his bachelor’s degree even though they haven’t yet graduated.  I understand the whole security thing with a job and degree, but is there a reason why girls on this site can’t look into the near, immediate future instead of so far down the road?

Dear High Standards Syndrome,

It may sound surprising to you, but there are guys on JDate who are just as picky and unrealistic! But that’s beside the point and I want to address your question and not just go on the defensive (hiding my smirk). It sounds like many of the girls you have experienced on JDate are on the younger side and I bet they will adjust their preferences as they get older and find that their idea of a perfect man doesn’t exist. In the meantime, I’d suggest you alter your preferences and look for women a bit older and who already have their bachelor degrees so you don’t run into the type of women you’ve described above. No matter what though, there are always going to be women who think they are the cat’s meow and believe they deserve the smartest, richest, most handsome guy out there even if they aren’t bringing the same attributes to the table. Luckily, your princess radar seems to be working, so simply eliminate these immature women with unrealistically high standards as soon as you see the signs. But, be cautious because sometimes a lamb is hiding in sheep’s clothing. Some women would rather set the highest standards for themselves and then decide which to compromise on when a good guy comes along — as they could do with you if only they would give you a chance and you would give them some leeway. I, on the other hand, always did the opposite: I set medium height yet realistic standards and waited for a guy to come along who surpassed my expectations. Try to hold back from judging the women too quickly as oftentimes women (as well as men) on JDate tend to come with an overly-confident attitude at first because they’re simply scared. Good Luck!

True Love Take 2

by Tamar Caspi under JDate,Online Dating,Relationships,Single Life

Dear Tamar,

Do you think after spending 39 years with your Beshert, there is another one out there?  I am a young-ish widow (58 years old) and wonder if I will spend the remainder of my life without that type of love again.

Dear True Love Take 2,

First, I am sorry for your loss. Losing my spouse at a young age is one of my worst nightmares. My parents have friends in this situation as well, and I’ve fully supported them in signing up for JDate, attending temple functions and going on blind dates. You are young, active, and could have 40 more years of living to do (knock on wood) and want someone to share that with. Totally understandable!  That said, I do think it’s possible to find true love again! Not only do I believe in there being more than one Beshert for each of us, but I believe that once we’re in a different stage of our lives — as you are — our idea of who or what defines a Beshert is different from our definition when we were much younger.  Just think, compared to 39 years ago, your list of preferences is so much simpler — you’re not worried about finishing college, having kids, buying your first place, getting a job that will support your growing family and so forth. You’re probably more concerned with sharing the same interests in movies, food, traveling, and spending time with grandchildren. Keep your JDate preferences as broad as possible and let your friends, family, Rabbi and virtually everyone you come in contact with know that you’re interested in being set-up. Good luck!

What Should “We” Order?

by RollingStone9862 under Date Night,Relationships

I am a food sharer. A sampler if you will who prefers, and usually insists, that at least one other person that I am enjoying a meal with splits it with me. Growing up my mom was the one who cleverly instilled in me the idea that if you are at a restaurant, where a bunch of things on the menu look good, you don’t have to be burdened with the difficult decision of choosing one singular item to order.

Instead, my mom opened my eyes to the idea that we could each pick one thing that we wanted and share so that we would, in actuality, get to try two different things. Thus far, this has turned out to be one of the most important and lasting lessons that my mom has taught me, since I attempt to follow this bit of wisdom every time I go out to eat.

While I’m not willing to definitively say whether or not someone who enjoys sharing or splitting food at restaurants is a “deal breaker” as to whether I will ultimately date them or not; it certainly helps. A couple of months ago I went out on a first date to a Mexican restaurant that I really liked, where there were two things on the menu that I had trouble deciding between. I figured that since she knew that I had been there before that she might ask for a suggestion or give an indication that she might be open to sharing.

She ended up not giving any clues as to her ordering preferences, but I did get lucky that she ended up requesting one of the dishes that I would have wanted to share. Upon hearing her order I quickly asked for the other dish, but once our food came I failed to inquire about sharing. Instead I opted to let it go since you never know what people’s preferences are going to be and simply ate only my food.

In spite of my disappointment in not sharing we still both had a fun time and decided to go out again. After having a first date where we didn’t share anything, we were once again at a restaurant in a food ordering situation for our third date.  After blankly staring at the menu wondering whether or not I should bring up the fact that I like to share food I was fortunate that she interrupted my thinking with a novel suggestion, “Do you just want to get two things and share?”

After letting out an obvious sigh of relief I told her of my affection for sharing food. She answered back that we should have shared on our first date since what we both ordered looked so good. After acknowledging her response we went on to have a conversation about how we both enjoyed sharing food for the exact the same reasons.  This once again proves that unless you let people know your tastes and preferences, whether they be for sharing food, eating a particular type of food or even something non-food related, you won’t have as many opportunities to share cool things in common.

Age is Just a Number

by Tamar Caspi under JDate,Online Dating,Relationships

Upon signing up for an account on JDate you’re asked to choose an age range for your matches. Choosing your age range doesn’t sound like it should be a complicated matter, but alas age isn’t just a number. By choosing a narrow age range you’re systematically eliminating thousands of prospects simply because of age.

Like is attracted to like.  So, someone just out of college is often drawn to someone who is in the same phase in their life, while someone in their late 20’s who is working really hard to get to the top of their field is attracted to other people in a similar stage. The same goes for people in their early 30’s who are beginning to think about starting a family, they’re looking for someone who’s on the same page. That’s why many people end up dating and marrying people around the same age. But selecting a narrow age gap on JDate is not in your favor. If you’re a 28-year-old female and select a maximum age of 32, imagine how many 33-year-olds you’re excluding. Now imagine how many 34-year-olds you’re excluding. And it’s only an age gap of a few years!

When you meet someone at a bar you can only attempt to measure his or her age based on their looks, and possibly their career and maturity, but you were attracted to that person and started getting to know him or her before asking their age. So when it turns out that he or she is a few years younger than your minimum or a couple years older than your maximum, are you going to turn your back? Probably not, so attach that philosophy to your JDate account and broaden your options.

Interestingly, as we get older our preferred age range tends to change. First, it broadens and then it becomes narrower. When you’re approaching your 30’s you tend to only add a few years on each end because for some inexplicable reason age matters.  However, in your mid-30’s the age range widens a bit as other, more important traits take precedence. And as 40 looms in the not too distant future you’re more than willing to add 10 years on each end because you become pickier about other qualities. I actually think the last approach is best – make the age range as broad as possible and use other, more important, traits to narrow down your search.